No. 63 | Seven ways to get more art that you like in the world

Crowd at a Doomtree concert.

“This is so cool, why isn’t there more stuff like this?” Great question. Here are seven ways to get more art that you like in the world.

1) Make it.

I’ve seen many people go from absolute novice to “could show that work at a coffeeshop” in six months. Take it from a habitual hobby-hopper: personally-satisfying artistic accomplishment is accessible in many genres in not a lot of time. Go fast and don’t overthink it. I’ve made things that delighted me in the course of a 3-hour beginner’s class. 

2) Buy it.


3) Give money to the people who make it.

Maybe you can’t afford your friend’s $600 (or $6,000) oil paintings. Fair. But maybe you can buy a print, or buy them lunch at a show, or throw $3/mo at their illustration Patreon.

4) Share it when you find it.

I’ve been trying to tweet and blog more about bands and other art that I like in part because I realized that’s how I discover almost everything that I like. If I’m not sharing and shouting the praises of my own discoveries, then it’s only a one-way street. Nothing I did to personally promote my book was as popular/viral as when someone else shared about it on my behalf. Is there someone whose work you like that you can shout out RIGHT NOW? 

5) Rate it.

Typically only people with a grievance go out of their way to rate and review and leave comments on things online. If you’re going to buy your friend’s work, consider doing it through an “official” channel (e.g. Bandcamp, Etsy, iTunes) so the sales and your subsequent review shows up in their public stats.

6) Encourage it.

Several people at the open mic nights my buddy Jon and I have been playing recently have gone out of their way to say something encouraging. It’s not flattery — no one’s saying we’re the greatest anything — but it’s kind, and genuine, and it means a lot. It makes you want to do it again, a feeling that can be hard to access if you’re having an off night (or year).

7) Rep it. 

I like seeing the No Kings and Wings/Teeth logos around town. They represent Doomtree, an incredible band and local hip-hop collective. They have a proud fanbase that likes to rep them. I’m already a big fan, but spotting a No Kings patch on some guy’s backpack often reminds even me to check up on latest releases or see when the next show is.

Originally published as List No. 63 of the 7x77 newsletter project.
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